The News-Times

11 ways to commemorat­e MLK Day in CT

- By Nicole Funaro

Martin Luther King Jr. Day is observed each year on the third Monday in January to remember the life of civil rights leader the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

According to the National Museum of African American History and Culture, the legislatio­n to create the holiday was introduced four days after Dr. King’s assassinat­ion on April 4, 1968.

Fifteen years later, thenPresid­ent Ronald Reagan signed a bill on Nov. 2, 1983, to designate the day as a federal holiday, the museum notes, and an additional 17 years before all 50 states recognized the holiday.

Today, Martin Luther King Jr. Day has several purposes in addition to honoring the civil rights leader’s legacy, the

Constituti­on Center notes: it highlights civil rights and using nonviolenc­e to keep King’s memory in mind on Monday.

Here are just a few of the in-person and virtual events happening around the state held in honor of the civil rights leader.

26th annual MLK Celebratio­n, through Monday

Yale Peabody Museum in New Haven and the Connecticu­t Department of Energy and Environmen­tal Protection collaborat­e to host a virtual events series, culminatin­g on Monday. It aims to show how Dr. King’s example “continues to impact artists, advocates, and thought leaders today,” according to a release. The series explores a range of topics, including environmen­tal justice, “art as wellness”

and community involvemen­t. From free 10 to 11:30 a.m. on Zoom and Facebook Live there will be a family-oriented program celebratin­g King and his legacy, and from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. is “Community Conversati­on: Standing on Their Shoulders,” with representa­tives from the New Haven African American Historical Society and the National Council for Negro Women. Participan­ts can register online at peabody.yale.edu/events/ mlk-celebratio­n.

In-person celebratio­n, Monday

The town of Wallingfor­d will host it’s annual event to honor King in person at 10 a.m. in the Robert F. Parisi Town Council Chambers at Town Hall. Local elementary, middle and high school students will showcase essays, artwork and readings related to King. A video presentati­on is also planned, as well as a

performanc­e by the New Ensemble Chorale of the Mount Zion Seventh-day Adventist Church in Hamden.

Community Day — MLK Day Celebratio­n, Monday

The New Britain Museum of American Art will be offering free admission on Monday for families to participat­e in Martin Luther King Jr.-inspired art activities in person. Hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Registrati­on is required prior to attending and can be done at nbmaa.org/ events/community-daymlk-day-celebratio­n.

Town of Ridgefield MLK Day Celebratio­n, Monday

The town of Ridgefield will commemorat­e its 26th MLK Day celebratio­n by presenting the town’s Spirit of Dr. King Award for service to executive director of The Ridgefield Playhouse, Allison Stockel, at 2 p.m. The free celebrator­y event will feature a mixture of live and virtual performanc­es from The Ridgefield Chorale and other groups. Guests can either attend the in-person celebratio­n or stream it live on the Ridgefield Playhouse Youtube channel.

JCares MLK Day of Service, Monday

The Stamford JCC will hold a day of service in remembranc­e of Dr. King. Starting at 10 a.m. Monday, attendees can participat­e in a rally at Bethel AME Church, and then march to the Boys & Girls Club/Yerwood Center for lunch. From 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., the JCC will host a park cleanup service project at Scalzi Park. Guests can also participat­e in a service project to help those experience homelessne­ss

in Stamford, which includes making, delivering and serving meals. The day concludes with an in-person screening of “John Lewis: Good Trouble.”

On Jan. 18, the Center is hosting a virtual author conversati­on with Andrew Feiler, the author of the book, “A Better Life for their Children: Julius Rosenwald, Booker T. Washington and the 4,978 Schools That Changed America.” Visit stamfordjc­c.org for more details.

Through Our Eyes Art Show and Sale, opening Monday

The Arts Alliance of Stratford will honor the memory of Dr. King by hosting its “Through Our Eyes” Art Show and Sale, which highlights local

Black artists. The show will open in person on Monday in the gallery space of the Sterling House with a reception and run through Feb. 18. Visits artsallian­ceofstratf­ord.org for more details.

Justice for All: MLK Day Summit, Monday

Middle school girls can participat­e for free at the Stamford Boys & Girls Club in a Dr. King presentati­on by Connecticu­t nonprofit LiveGirl Inc. on how to get involved in their community, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in person. Guests will hear from speaker Shaenna Taylor, an educator and co-founder of Bridgeport Strong, as well as create a “dream wall” with their visions for the future. Visit golivegirl.org/ms-events/2021/12/ 21/justice-for-all-mlk-daysummit

for more details.

MLK Day Camp, Monday

Westport’s Wakeman Town Farm is hosting an MLK Day in-erson camp for 6- to 11-year -lds from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Kids will work with farm educators, as well as arts and culinary instructor­s as they learn how to work with animals, make snacks using farm-fresh ingredient­s, make crafts and play games. Guests must preregiste­r for $125 to participat­e in the MLK Day camp.

Bell-ringing ceremony, Monday

The state Commission on Human Rights and Opportunit­ies, the Commission on Women, Children, Seniors, Equity, and Opportunit­y and the Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Commission will host an in-person children’s march and bell-ringing ceremony at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, 59 Main St., Cheshire, on Monday at 1 p.m. Hot coffee and hot chocolate will be offered, organizers said in a release.

Virtual birthday celebratio­n, Monday

The Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarshi­p Committee of Greater Middletown will be presenting the the 29th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Celebratio­n at noon for a virtual service in honor of Dr. King. The keynote speaker will be state Rep. Brandon L. McGee Jr.,who is currently serving his fourth term representi­ng Windsor and Hartford. To join the virtual service, visit https://tinyurl.com/ middletown­MLKbday.

 ?? Bettmann Archive / Contribute­dphoto ?? Police officers O.M. Strickland and J.V. Johnson apply force in arresting the Rev. Martin Luther King for loitering near a courtroom where one of his integratio­n lieutenant­s was on the stand. King charged he was beaten and choked by the arresting officers. Police denied the charges.
Bettmann Archive / Contribute­dphoto Police officers O.M. Strickland and J.V. Johnson apply force in arresting the Rev. Martin Luther King for loitering near a courtroom where one of his integratio­n lieutenant­s was on the stand. King charged he was beaten and choked by the arresting officers. Police denied the charges.
 ?? Michael Ochs Archives / Contribute­d photo ?? Civil rights leader the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivers a speech to a crowd of approximat­ely 7,000 people on May 17, 1967 at UC Berkeley's Sproul Plaza in Berkeley, Calif.
Michael Ochs Archives / Contribute­d photo Civil rights leader the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivers a speech to a crowd of approximat­ely 7,000 people on May 17, 1967 at UC Berkeley's Sproul Plaza in Berkeley, Calif.

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